Arsenal played well in their weekend fixture against Crystal Palace at the Emirates Stadium, took the lead in the first half stoppage time through an Alexis Sanchez goal, and looked good for all three points against their feeble opponents.
But one lapse of concentration and the tricky Yannick Bolasie found a way past Petr Cech to score the equalizing goal and help Crystal Palace secure an unexpected draw from a game that they looked destined to lose.
The final whistle accompanied wild jeering and whistling from Arsenal fans directed at their own players and manager Arsene Wenger. The team has won just four of their last 13 games across all competitions as they head towards the end of the season without the prospect of any silverware.
The script has become all too familiar for the Emirates faithful. The promise of a good season, a bunch of good performances that raise the title hopes, then a month-long – or sometimes longer slump – and then nothing but the fourth place in the league to play for.
Looking back at the current season, Arsenal could have been fighting for the title. In a campaign when most of the traditional powerhouses, Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool have badly struggled to put together a string of decent performances, lesser sides like Leicester City and Tottenham Hotspur have taken the initiative and are gunning for the title with last four matches left in the season.
But Arsenal are again left with nothing but to hang onto their cherished fourth-placed finish, and if things go the same way as they have been for the past couple of months, then the Londoners might be struggling to even get a Champions League spot next season.
With the growing disquiet at the Emirates Stadium, fans have registered their protests with raised voices and are now all set to vote with their feet, a large chunk of them having declared to boycott the midweek fixture against West Bromwich Albion.
However, Wenger is still defiant and feels that the scheduling of the game might have something to do with the fans staying out.
“Everybody is free to do what he wants with his season ticket. We have to live with that. It’s a Thursday night; it’s unusual. We just had a disappointing result at home, maybe that plays a part as well. First of all, it’s not experienced yet, and we have to live with that.
“Is the disillusionment more pronounced? Yeah, maybe. But we have to take that with distance as well, and focus on our job. The emotional part in our game is always very high, but it changes very quickly, as well. Judgment from people [is something] we have to live with. It’s down to us to change that belief and judgment.”
Hearing that response for the man who has been managing their club for close to two decades, the Arsenal fans would be forgiven for thinking the time is right for Wenger to go.